File photo : Commerce Minister Phumtham Wechayachai
Commerce Minister Phumtham Wechayachai has assured representatives of sugarcane growers that his ministry is ready to remove sugar from the list of price-controlled products, if there is consent from all stakeholders.
The Central Committee on the Prices of Goods and Services (CCPGS) has issued an announcement adding sugar to the list of controlled products, after the Sugar and Sugarcane Committee decided to increase the ex-refinery prices of white and pure white sugar, for the 2023-24 harvest, by 4 baht/kg, from 19 baht and 20 baht/kg respectively, effective from November 2nd.
The announcement by the CCPGS has prompted about 50 sugarcane millers to threaten to suspend operations in protest.
At a meeting with representatives of four sugarcane growers associations on Thursday, Phumtham said it was agreed that a committee, headed by his advisor Yanyong Puangrach, would be set up to tackle the problem of sugar prices and the likelihood is that sugar will excluded from the list of price controlled products. The next meeting is scheduled for Monday.
A representative of the sugarcane growers assured the meeting that millers will not shut down their plants, as threatened, and that there is sufficient supply to meet domestic demand.
The Sugar and Sugarcane Committee issued an announcement yesterday setting the retail prices of white and pure white sugar, for the 2023-24 harvest, at 23 baht and 24 baht/kg respectively.